NOURISH   (nûr′ĭsh)

1) To provide the substances necessary for life and growth
2) To foster the development of; promote
3) To keep alive; maintain

If money wasn’t an option, where would you go out to eat for dinner? Would it be one of the landmark steak houses in downtown St. Paul or Minneapolis? Maybe you would choose one of the trendy new restaurants opening up by acclaimed chefs in the North Loop or Lower Downtown? Or may-be you would choose one of the outstanding restaurants that line the St. Croix River. While we don’t deny the great meal you would get at any of these restaurants, a great meal by itself can still leave you hungry. Sometimes the best dinners, the ones we remember and talk about for years, happen while eating a frozen pizza sitting outside around a bonfire on a cool fall evening with some dear friends and family. It was the best meal you had in a long time. The fact the crust tasted like cardboard had nothing to do with it. Sometimes the things that make a meal truly great are the things that money can’t buy. And in those moments when we allow ourselves to be honest we might just be willing to acknowledge what we hunger for isn’t just food, but for something, someone, some event to nourish us at the core of who we are.
Nourish is our Stewardship/Ministry Theme for 2016. During the coming year we will seek out the things that nourish us, both as individuals and as a community. During the year we will explore the ways we are nourished and then in turn are called to nourish others. During the next few months we will expand our definition of what it means to be a church to one which includes being a place where we are nourished. Nourished by the grace and love of God that we in turn might nourish the world with God’s presence, God’s love, and God’s grace. What would our church look like if we understood our mission to be one in which God calls us to nourish each other, our community, the world. What would be needed? Where would you start?

“We the People of Christ Lutheran Church Are a Welcoming Community Seeking to Grow Faithful and Transformed Members, Who Serve in God’s World with Love.”

We believe that our welcoming friendliness is one of Christ Lutheran Church’s distinguishing characteristics.  Whether you are a long time resident of our community, a newcomer, or an occasional guest, you are invited to become a part of our extended Christian family.  Come to worship; visit one of our educational or social offerings; participate in a musical group; or find a place to serve.  Come find your spiritual home at Christ Lutheran Church  in Marine on St. Croix.

Our history...

140 years ago, the Swedish settlers who chose Marine Mills as their  home started a church with the mission belief “ at last come here to unite ourselves in God’s name.” 

In 1872, eighty-one people gathered  to begin a church congregation for themselves and the generations that followed. They built a church, paying $540 for lumber and $348.12 for labor. The site they chose sat on top of a hill, overlooking the St. Croix River and its Valley, so the community could follow the light from the steeple tower. 

The church mission written in Swedish translates into the needs of today’s generation…“As most of us have considered that such a step is necessary for the welfare of Christ’s kingdom and our own souls’ welfare…”

Today the light of the steeple tower continues to shine. Old and young worship together in a remodeled handicap-accessible facility. Area organizations are encouraged to utilize Christ Lutheran’s expanded gathering spaces like the Nyman Center and Torgeson Hall, for meetings and to learn more about the warmth and fellowship enjoyed by church members.

Created in God’s image, we are called to celebrate our unity in Christ and live as His followers, with the light of Christ shining through us. We are the church, one church, Christ’s church  —generation to generation—with the beacon of light brightening our world.

We are part of the St. Paul Area Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA)



Pastor Joel

Joel Martin began his call as senior pastor at Christ Lutheran in February of 2009. Previously he served for 12 years as pastor of Lord of the Valley Lutheran Church in Granby, Colorado and before that as a chaplain at Fairview-University (then Riverside) Medical Center in Minneapolis.

Joel is known for his skills at preaching and leading worship. His warm and upbeat personality emerges as he brings to worship an honest and hope-filled demeanor. His messages proceed on a foundation of Biblical scholarship and sensitivity to the needs and concerns of the community and congregation. In worship, Bible study, and in daily conversations, Joel is continually inviting the congregation to expand their understanding of what it means to intentionally live lives as followers of Christ.

Joel received his Master of Divinity degree from Luther Seminary in St. Paul and his Doctorate in Ministry from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.

Joel and his wife, Linda, live in Marine with their son and their daughter, both of whom attend schools in the Stillwater district.

Pastor Hannah

hannah cropped

Hannah Bartos began her call as Pastor of Family Faith Formation in November 2015. Pastor Hannah Bartos grew up in Osceola, WI, in the deep woods along the St. Croix River. She and her brothers, Micah and Noah, were known for swimming in the family pool,exploring the forest, and catching fish in the backwaters. She followed in the footsteps of her parents, Neil and Ellen, who love God, love others, love theater, and love good food. Hannah graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College with degrees in political science and religion, and from Luther Seminary, with a specialization in children, youth, and family ministry. Hannah previously served at Chisago Lake Lutheran,Center City, MN and Our Savior’s Lutheran in Mesa, AZ. Ordained in 2010, Hannah served her first call at Christ the King Lutheran in New Brighton, MN. Hannah is known for her joyful presence and creativity. She loves engaging God’s children of all ages in worship, service, learning, and fellowship. Hannah seeks to share Christ’s promises in uplifting and relatable ways. An avid fan of nature, naps, and Netflix, you can find Hannah and her husband, Derek, planning daily adventures and playing with their cat, Barry. They reside in Hugo.